Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, because it’s all about gratitude. As we enter the holiday season, we can easily get caught up in the frenzy of acquiring and lose perspective. I’d like to share a personal story about what it means to me to be the spokesperson and ambassador for Goodwill’s Donate Movement, and how gratitude is the foundation of it all for me.
While my brother Steve was in Afghanistan in 2005, we had a long Skype conversation, and we were discussing the Afghan children that always happily flock to the soldiers when they arrive in their towns.
My family and friends had shipped over some basic medical supplies, toys, and candy because he wanted some things to give the kids when they came up to see him. He was remarking at how these kids literally have nothing, and they treasure every tiny thing — something as simple as one coloring book or a single piece of candy means everything to them.
As a professional organizer, I was reflecting upon how many children here have too many toys and don’t appreciate any of them, and I remarked to him how fascinating it is that here in the developed world, many of us have SO MUCH STUFF that we feel the need to hire experts like me to sort out the abundance… while these kids cannot even imagine what that is like.
Steve paused and said, “Lorie, I see you on a stage someday talking about that.” And I agreed. I was very moved and inspired to share this perspective and this message. I had no idea that five years later, I would talk to millions of people about helping others from our abundance as a part of my work with the Donate Movement and the Clutter Diet® program.
That conversation with my brother inspired me to write the tagline I say at the end of every one of our weekly “Clutter Video Tips” on YouTube: “May you always be happy and grateful for having more than enough.”
The “problem” of managing clutter is really a privilege to be grateful for. I believe that when people are grateful, they feel more abundant. And when they feel abundant, they feel like giving to others. To me, the Donate Movement is about ACTIVATING PEOPLE’S GRATITUDE.
This holiday season and throughout the year, I hope you’ll join with me in promoting this movement, this perspective, and this important message. Please visit http://donate.goodwill.org to learn more, use our Donation Impact Calculator, and find out how to get involved.
And most importantly, gratefully and joyfully DONATE your gently used goods to Goodwill as you manage your own abundance. Happy Thanksgiving!